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FATHER GOOSE - DVD Movie
Cary Grant's penultimate feature before retirement was this cheerful 1964 effort to overturn his career-long image of urbane sophistication. As the unshaven, messy misanthrope Walter Eckland, a World War II-era beach bum who monitors Japanese air activity for the Australian navy in exchange for booze, Grant makes a convincingly hard-bitten, hard-drinking antihero. Until, that is, a pretty French schoolmistress Leslie Caron and her seven little charges all girls survive a nearby plane crash and invade Eckland's raunchy isolation. Directed by 1960s hit-maker Ralph Nelson The Lilies of the Field, Charly, Father Goose is a glossy comedy that also does justice to its more suspenseful scenes a deadly snakebite suffered by Caron's character is especially memorable and leaves plenty of room for Grant to indulge in some entertaining if atypical screen behavior. All in all, this is a minor treat in the actor's magnificent filmography. --Tom Keogh